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Nothing will tell you how good the food is quite like your stomach. For Michael Jordan Friedman, it was good choices mixed with instinct that has helped put his health food business on the radar.

According to Crain’s New York Business, the inspiration hit while working as an independent food consultant. His job required him to deal with slaughterhouses, and he didn’t like what he saw. That experience helped turn him vegan, and planted the inspiration for his business.

In 2003, Mr. Friedman gathered a team of food experts he’d met along the way to serve as an unpaid advisory board as he developed a line of health foods. In 2006, Manhattan-based Fresh Harvest Products launched Wings of Nature, a line of health bars, olive oil, salsa and coffee. The company had a distributor, which sold to mom-and-pop retailers. In 2007, Mr. Friedman took the company public.

Fresh Harvest Products got a big break in 2009, when a mountaineering friend of its founder sent the bars to a Whole Foods buyer. The bars, which retail between $1.69 and $1.99, are now sold at 12 Northeastern Whole Foods, including branches at Union Square and Columbus Circle in Manhattan, and at more than 700 Walgreens stores in Florida. Cranberry Crunch, Almond Raisin and Espresso Coffee bars, made in Canada with ingredients such as nuts, raisins and coffee beans, are organic, gluten-free and vegan.

The company, which employs six people, earned $1 million in annual revenue in 2010, but still isn’t profitable.

Image from Fresh Harvest Products

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Originally posted by Angela Shupe on January 21, 2013 in Ideas.

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